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Full text of "The Cambridge Natural History"

550                          AFFINITIES OF
borings of the larva of a certain, beetle of which the Lemur*is
particularly fond, and can extract the insect, or at any rate
discover its position, when it may be extracted by the powerful
chisel-shaped teeth. The partiality of the Aye-aye for animal
food of any kind including insects has been both reaffirmed and
denied; and Mr. Bartlett has seen the creature use its slender
finger for combing out its hair, and for other purposes of the
" toilet." Dr. Oudemans has figured in his paper an apple which
has been largely eaten by the Qhiromys; the fleshy pulp has
been entirely excavated, leaving only the core and the skin, which
are untouched. The Rev. Mr. Baron is one of the latest writers
upon the ways of life of CJiiromys} He states that it inhabits
the most dense parts of the forests. It has the habit of prowling
about in pairs, and the female produces but a single young one
at a birth. A nest, which is about 2 feet across, is made of twigs
in lofty branches. This is occupied during the day, and entered
by a hole in the side. With regard to the superstitious venera-
tion in which the animal is held, it is said that if a person sleeps
in the forest the Aye-aye will bring him a pillow. ** If a pillow
for the head, the person will become rich; if for the feet, he will
shortly succumb to the creature's fatal power, or at least will
become bewitched," But a counter-charm, may be obtained. It
is said that the reverence for this beast leads the natives to bury
carefully a specimen found dead.
Fam. 3. Tarsiidae,—This family also consists of but a single
genus, Tarsius, to which it is the general opinion, that but a
single species belongs; there are, however, at least four different
specific names on record* The general aspect of the animal is
not unlike that of a Galago, with which it also agrees in the
elongation of the ankle; but the elongation is more pronounced
in the present genus. The ears are large, and the eyes are
extraordinarily developed. The fingers and toes terminate in
large expanded discs, and are furnished with flattened nails
except on the second arid third toes, which have claws. The tail
is longer than the body and is tufted at the end. The skull is
more like that of the Anthropoidea than is the skull of any
other Lemur. The resemblance is by reason of the almost com-
plete separation of the orbit and the temporal fossa by bone;
1 Proc. Zuol. Soc. 1882, p. 639 ; see also Bev. G. A. Shaw, Proc. Zool. Soc. 1883,
p. 44, 2nd Art.